Hope McKenney

Reporter

Born in rural Northern California, Hope started as a reporter and producer at KZYX in Mendocino County. She then worked at Kichwa Hatari ⁠— the first Quechua language radio station in the U.S., based in New York ⁠— and KQED in San Francisco. 

She has lived in Bolivia, Peru, and Cuba, and is now excited to cover the beautiful Aleutians.  

Ways to Connect

Hope McKenney/KUCB

New classes at this summer's Camp Qungaayux taught kids traditional Unangax̂ skills they haven't learned in previous years. 

Organized by the Qawalangin Tribe, the culture camp brought 68 kids to Unalaska's Humpy Cove for a weeklong celebration of Unangax̂ tradition. Now in its 22nd year, the July program had more kids and classes than ever before. 

"There are two new classes," said Shayla Shaishnikoff, the camp coordinator. "One of them is drum-making. Another one is ayaakux̂. It's dart-making and a dart game."

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

Last month marked the hottest, driest July in the Aleutian Islands in 95 years.

The conditions matched the larger trend across Alaska, which experienced below-average rainfall and record-breaking heat.  

While the Lower 48 posted significantly above-average temperatures in July, it was Alaska's warmest month on record since 1925,  according to a report from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).

Aleutian Pribilof Islands Association

The Aleutian Pribilof Islands Association (APIA) has started a six-week intensive program for men focused on maintaining a healthy, substance-free lifestyle in Unalaska.

Clinician Delta Bedard is leading the workshop. She said it'll cover 12 topics, including communication, stress management, conflict resolution, and setting healthy boundaries.

"A lot of times with addiction, people live life by default," said Bedard. "They respond to one crisis after another, especially when they're in the throes of addiction. This is going to teach them how to live life with intent."

Hope McKenney/KUCB

The top prize at this summer's Ballyhoo Mountain Run went to a visiting teenager. 

Alex Olson of Fairbanks raced up and down the 1,600-foot summit last month in 26 minutes and 33 seconds. He beat out 31 competitors. 

"I feel pretty good," said Olson. "It's fun to come out here and do these community runs."

The 18-year-old was in Unalaska to visit and work for family members who live on the island.

"This is my first time in Dutch Harbor," he said. "I just came down for the summer."

Berett Wilber/KUCB

Updated 7/29/19

Federal agents are investigating how the City of Unalaska was tricked into sending an undisclosed sum of money to a financial scammer. 

City Manager Erin Reinders said the fraudulent activity was detected July 10. The Finance Department realized it had received a fake payment request from an entity pretending to have provided services to the city.

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